Hopkins erases seven-goal deficit to top Virginia

March 24, 2018 | WNST Staff


CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – The Johns Hopkins men’s lacrosse record book is currently 104 pages long and contains virtually every statistical record available dating back to 1955 and even more information dating back to the inception of the program in 1883.

One thing missing from the book entering Saturday’s game at Virginia was a listing for the last time – if ever – the Blue Jays came back from a seven-goal deficit to win a game.

Twice in the Dave Pietramala era the Blue Jays had erased six-goal deficits (at Syracuse in 2005 and against Virginia in 2017), but there was no entry of a seven-goal recovery anywhere to be found. There is now.

After a 15-13 come-from-behind victory over the Cavaliers on Saturday, a victory that saw the Blue Jays erase deficits of 8-1 and 9-2, that entry now stands at March 24, 2018 against Virginia.

Johns Hopkins (6-2) used six and seven-goal runs to outscore the Cavaliers 13-4 after halftime and turn a 9-2 halftime deficit into the 15-13 victory that gave the Blue Jays possession of the Doyle Smith Cup for the second consecutive season.

The comeback hope – perhaps feint at the half – was alive less than three minutes into the second half as sophomore Cole Williams scored a pair of unassisted goals to make it 9-4 with more than 12 minutes remaining in the third quarter.

That score held for more than four minutes before junior Kyle Marr scored back-to-back goals in a three-minute span to draw the Blue Jays within 9-6 and the six-goal run was complete 90 seconds after the second Marr goal as seniors Shack Stanwick and Joel Tinney scored consecutive extra-man goals.

The Cavaliers (7-3), who fired 27 first-half shots but only 12 after halftime, slowed the run late in the third period as Dox Aitken scored twice in a 42-second span to push the Cavalier lead back to three at 11-8, but senior Hunter Moreland won the faceoff after the second of Aitken’s two quick goals and raced untouched to the goal and fired home his third of the year.

The Moreland goal jump-started the seven-goal run that gave Hopkins an improbable 15-11 lead; from seven down to four up in just over 26 minutes.

A behind-the-back strike from Marr and a left-handed ally dodge goal from freshman Connor DeSimone in the first 68 seconds of the fourth quarter drew the Blue Jays even for the first time since the game began and Tinney bookended the final four goals in the seven-goal run to give the Blue Jays the 15-11 lead with just under four minutes remaining. The spree also included the third goals of the day for both Williams and DeSimone.

The quick-strike Cavaliers needed less than a minute – 36 seconds to be exact – to trim the four-goal deficit to two as Ian Laviano converted after a Blue Jay turnover and Aitken scored his sixth of the game seven seconds after the ensuing faceoff.

A year ago, the Blue Jays were up three with less than two minutes to go and still needed overtime to knock off the Cavaliers. They wouldn’t need extra time this season.

The Cavaliers failed on a clear with 1:32 remaining and senior goalie Brock Turnbaugh saved a 12-yard step-down from Aitken with less than a minute to play to seal the victory.

Twenty-eight goals and 91 shots – amazingly, that’s only the third-highest-scoring Hopkins-Virginia game in the last three years (UVA won 16-15 in 2015 and the Jays booked an 18-17 overtime victory in 2017).

Behind the faceoff work of Justin Schwenk, who won 10-of-13 in the first half, the Cavaliers built what appeared to be the comfortable 9-2 halftime lead. A pair of four-goal runs, the first that took just 8:03 to open the game and the second that answered Hopkins’ only goal in the first 29 minutes, staked UVA to an 8-1 lead.

Aitken had a hat trick and Laviano scored twice during the 8-1 game-opening run for the Cavaliers, who answered DeSimone’s first of the game with 40 seconds left in the first half with Kraus’s second with just six second left before intermission to make account for the 9-2 margin at halftime.

Halftime. The normal halftime length is 10 minutes. On Saturday, halftime was extended by two minutes to accommodate a number of activities taking place on the Klockner Stadium field. As it turned out, two extra minutes was all the Blue Jays needed to regroup and post the latest – and maybe the first – seven-goal comeback in school history.

Marr led the Blue Jays with four goals and one assist, while Tinney (2g, 3a), Williams (3g) and DeSimone (3g) all had at least three points on the day. Turnbaugh posted 10 saves in goal for the Blue Jays, who also got a 14-of-29 performance at the X to go along with seven ground balls and the one goal from Moreland. Moreland won 11-of-19 in the second half, including 7-of-11 in the game-changing third quarter when the Blue Jays jumped back in the game.

Aitken led the Cavaliers with his six-goal performance, while Laviano (3g) and Kraus (2g, 5a) helped fuel UVA offensively. Alex Rode posted 14 saves and Schwenk finished 18-of-31 at the dot.

Johns Hopkins outshot Virginia 52-39 (28-12 in the second half) and the teams were even on ground balls (JHU had a 21-12 advantage in the second half).

The Blue Jays will return to action on Sunday, April 1 when they travel to Rutgers to take on the Scarlet Knights in the first Big Ten game of the season.

Notes: Stanwick finished with one goal and one assist and tied Terry Riordan’s (1992-95) school-record 56-game point-scoring streak … his streak is also the third-longest active streak in the nation • Marr has 10 goals and two assists in his last two games against Virginia • JHU has scored at least 13 goals in five consecutive games for the first time since late in the 2015 season • Williams recorded his fourth career hat trick, while DeSimone’s was the second of his career • Moreland became the sixth player in school history with 400 career faceoff wins (409).